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Zen Computer

Philip Toshio Sudo

Average Review Rating Average Rating 9/10 (1 Review)
Book Details

Publisher : Simon & Schuster

Published : 2001

Copyright : Philip Toshio Sudo 1999

ISBN-10 : PB 0-684-85410-4
ISBN-13 : PB 978-0-684-85410-6

Publisher's Write-Up

Anyone who has ever cursed a computer will benefit from Zen Computer, with its soothing approach to living calmly amid the constant upheavals of new technology.

In a simple, easy-to-read style, Philip Toshio Sudo shows how the ancient principles of Zen philosophy apply to the modern science of bits and bytes, helping computer novices and the techno-savvy alike deal with everything from computer crashes to major life changes.

Divided into short, concise chapters, the book includes a user's guide to mindful computing, and features "The Seven Rules of Zen Computer." Quotes from thinkers such as Blaise Pascal, Albert Einstein, and Bill Gates illustrate the links between Western science and Eastern philosophy, making Zen Computer accessible to all readers, regardless of their familiarity with Zen.

Filled with Zen stories, samurai maxims, and beautiful artwork that combines Japanese brush painting with digital imagery, Zen Computer shows us how the interface between the traditional and technological can be found right here, right now.

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Reader Reviews

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Review by Paul Lappen (130604) Rating (9/10)

Review by Paul Lappen
Rating 9/10
It might be difficult to come up with two more disparate parts of daily life than computers and Zen. The author shows how the two actually go together really well, and how using a computer is very zen-like.

When sitting at the computer, take some time and meditate while looking at the number keys at the top of the keyboard. Proper breathing is essential. Those ten keys span the entire range of the digital and Zen Universes, from 1 to 0.

Among the Seven Rules of Zen Computer are: Expect the Unexpected, Do Not Waste Time, Do Good Work and Know When to Turn the Machine Off.

Sometimes, using the Escape key won't get us out of a computer function we don't want to continue. Life is the same way. No matter what we do to hide from our problem, it is still with us. The problem is not in the machine, it is in us.

No matter where the arrow is on the screen, it always points in the same direction. Why? Because the way to the truth never varies; it lies in faith, love, self-discipline and integrity. Easier said than done.

To give a file a name gives it an identity; it is no longer anonymous. People in pain are encouraged to name their feelings to begin healing. The failure to name, or acknowledge a name, is what makes us less human. To close a file is equated to the need for closure in our lives. From closure comes a new beginning.

Icons on a screen are graphic representations of files, programs or commands. It's nothing to move them around the screen or delete them. Zen thinks of religious icons the same way. Any sort of attachment, including material attachment, is a bad idea.

Searching the Web for information is not like searching for Enlightment. We can spend our lives looking for that indefinable It, but we'll never be successful. Each person is part of It, and ultimately is It.

In this frenetic, fast-paced world, everyone can use a little Zen in their lives. This book does a very good job at putting Zen and computers together. It also works as a basic introduction to computers. This is really recommended.
Paul Lappen (13th June 2004)

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